Clicks & shifts: Yahoo Study Reveals Daily Habits & Perceptions Towards Mobile Apps & Digital Services in Singapore

Clicks and Shifts: Yahoo Singapore Digital Study, delved deep into the daily habits and perceptions of 1,500 users in Singapore towards mobile apps and digital services, revealing intriguing insights into the digital landscape and potential societal concerns.

Findings from the study affirmed the nation’s high usage of mobile apps and services in their daily activities, including payments and transport. However, it found that there are differing views regarding the pace of technological change, the benefits and challenges of having new apps and digital services, and how these improve people’s quality of life, with several segments of society standing out. 

People in Singapore have largely kept up with technological advancements in their daily lives: a majority (84%) said they use mobile apps and digital services for daily activities often. Fifty-eight percent, also said they find that technological advancement for mobile apps and digital services is at the right pace. And while the majority were open to the benefits of mobile apps and digital services, a significant number of respondents were still on the fence.

Fifty-four percent of people surveyed said they least preferred cash payment methods, indicating that cash is no longer king. Respondents ranked contactless credit, debit or prepaid cards as the most preferred payment method, followed closely by mobile e-wallets and digital payment services. 

Tech has also evolved how people commute in Singapore, with just over half of the respondents saying they use ride-hailing services at least once a week. When deciding between public transport and ride-hailing services, a majority chose cost as one of their top options, followed by convenience and accessibility, travel duration, distance, and comfort. Notably, environmental impact was the lowest concern. Millennials use ride-hailing apps the most and are the least likely to prioritise cost and more likely to prioritise comfort and travel duration than other generations. 

Of those who rode public transport, the majority said they use a mobile app or an e-wallet for payment-related matters. For those who do not use mobile apps or e-wallets for public transport, a majority said they preferred using their physical card, followed by others who said their card had an automatic top-up function.

Ease of use and navigation also emerged as the top consideration for users when it comes to using mobile apps and digital services, followed by adequate protection of personal data and functionality. The findings showed that older generations were more concerned about protecting their personal data, with Baby Boomers and Gen X ranking it as one of their top concerns. 

While Baby Boomers are frequent users of mobile apps and digital services and generally do not perceive mobile apps and digital services negatively, they are the most susceptible to tech advancements. A considerable majority find the pace of change too fast, face inertia towards using new mobile apps and digital services, and find it much harder or are less likely to reap its potential benefits in daily life. 

Although tech adoption is widespread across the board, social factors such as affluence and educational level may play a role in how users navigate and benefit from technological advancements and services – with those from lower household incomes and educational levels at risk of being left behind. The study also revealed that those with higher household incomes and educational levels tend to use mobile apps and digital services more frequently and have a more positive outlook towards mobile apps and digital services. 


Yahoo Singapore, in collaboration with Milieu Insight conducted the Clicks and Shifts: Yahoo Singapore Digital Study in February 2024 to understand perceptions and behaviours towards mobile apps and digital services in Singapore. The quantitative survey was administered to 1,500 respondents aged 18 and above in Singapore.


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